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Apple squashes 24hr movie rental workaround

updated 11:10 pm EST, Thu January 17, 2008

24hr film rental bug fixed

Apple has corrected an issue where users were able to circumvent iTunes' 24 hour time-limit on its new movie rentals service. Earlier today Gizmodo reported that changing the system time -- on either Windows-based PC or a Mac -- by moving it forward or rolling it back, effectively allowed users to continue to watch the movie past the designated 24-hour period. In a follow-up report, Gizmodo notes that Apple has now disabled the circumvention technique by adding an additional check in iTunes. Changing the date/time, now yields a 5103 error from iTunes, according to the report.

"Alright so it appears to no longer work. Here's what happened on our end. Before, we had set our computer date to 2009, and started playing Ratatouille (and Benny started playing The Simpsons) to start the 24-hour timer in 2009," the site wrote. "Came back to 2008, everything was gravy. We go to play it again just a few minutes ago, and it tries to connect to iTunes, and then gives us a 5103 error. Benny gets the same deal."




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. coldfusion1970

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    spider-pig

    Marge - "You can bring Spider Pig if you want."

    Homer - "He's not Spider Pig anymore he's Harry Plopper."

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -1

    So...

    what if you don't have the network connection? It appears that iTunes keeps phoning home everytime you watch a video....

    Hey, Apple, maybe if you didn't limit the time to such a stupid and small interval people wouldn't be trying so hard to circumvent it.

  1. mark@pageworks.co.uk

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    So...

    > Hey, Apple, maybe if you didn't limit the time to such a stupid and small interval people wouldn't be trying so hard to circumvent it.

    I imagine the studios will have had a significant input into the time your have to watch the movie.

  1. climacs

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    mark

    you're new 'round these parts? Testudo is our resident Apple troll.

  1. mgpalma

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    re: Hey, Apple...

    "Hey, Apple, maybe if you didn't limit the time to such a stupid and small interval people wouldn't be trying so hard to circumvent it."

    Yeah, like no other movie service does the same thing. Like Amazon's Unbox...

  1. nat

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    jobs

    testudo has a thing against jobs. catch his post a few days ago about jobs wife and being small (this from the dear boy who never resorts to the personal attack).

    if it was 7 days people would try to hack it and our dear boy would trash apple for such a stupid and small interval. that's what he does. that's all he does.

  1. Bol3p2p

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    time server?

    Is it just checking the time against one of apple's time servers? If so, couldn't you run a ntpd and spoof apple's hostname? Just a guess, still haven't tried the new rental service.

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -1

    Re: so

    I imagine the studios will have had a significant input into the time your have to watch the movie.

    But I thought Apple could yield their big stick and get what they want. Why not say "24 hours, that's nuts! Make it 36 or 48!" (and what is the big deal with just 24 hours. Are the studios fearful you'll enjoy it so much you'll want to watch it twice over a weekend, stealing money from the poor craftsmen who've put their time and efforts into it?).

  1. testudo

    Joined: Dec 1969

    -1

    Re: hey apple

    Yeah, like no other movie service does the same thing. Like Amazon's Unbox...

    I always find it funny when people bring up these type of arguments. "Oh, you can't do that with Unbox, so why complain to apple!"

    I don't know, I thought Apple tried to be different, not just one of the many. Then again, they've also arbitrarily determined that HD rentals can only be viewed on the AppleTV. But I'm sure that's OK, because you can only view HD content on an Unbox or XBox or whatever...

  1. chromos

    Joined: Dec 1969

    0

    re: hey apple

    I believe that Apple had little of its usual leverage power in the video arena, given that it was more or less desperate to get all studios on board ('content is king'). Given that, it's up to the studios to wake up and be more consumer-friendly.

    As for the AppleTV, the fact that HD rentals are only on AppleTV doesn't sound so arbitrary given the fact that the device is HDCP-compliant and most regular PCs/Macs are not.

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